Features of the manifestation of childhood fears: the causes, types and methods of psychological correction in preschool children

Contents of

  • 1. Why does the child begin to experience fear?
  • 2. Other causes of phobia in children
  • 3. Types of children's fears
    • 3.1. Obsessive and delirious fears
    • 3.2. Supervalued and nocturnal fears in children
  • 4. Age features of phobias in a child
  • 5. Diagnosis of fears in children
  • 6. How to help a child get rid of fear
    • 6.1. Fairy tale therapy and igroterapiya
    • 6.2. Isoterapiya and sand therapy
  • 7. Recommendations for parents

There is no child in the world who would not be afraid of anything, even babies are prone to fear for a year. According to psychologists, childish fears and nightmares are a normal phenomenon at the stages of development and socialization of the child, so that parents do not have to worry if their child suddenly becomes afraid to go into a dark room or refuses to read a fairy tale about a monster.

Do not forget that any fear, sooner or later, can develop into pathol

ogy. To prevent this, parents should know the main points related to children's phobias, namely: what they are, what can cause them, and how to help the child to cope with such a problem.

Child The presence of fears in itself is not pathology and is peculiar to every child. The reason is the infinitely rich fantasy of the baby. So that fears do not become phobias and do not appear in the adult conscious age, you need to consider them carefully

Why does the child begin to experience fear?

In the book of Professor and Doctor of Psychological Sciences Zakharov Alexander Ivanovich "Day and night fears in children" says that while the child is still small, he is not able to build a chain of logical reasoning. As a result, the baby believes what parents tell, and any reaction in one or another situation completely transfers to oneself.

On the playgrounds you can often hear excited shouts: "Do not run so fast - you will fall!", "Get off from there - hit!", "Do not touch the dog - it will bite!", Or "Do not stop indulging, I'll take you to the policeman!".It is these emotional and sometimes too sharp intimidations and warnings about possible danger on the part of relatives and become the main cause of childhood fears. The most interesting thing is that most often children are frightened not by what happened, but by an overly violent reaction to what is happening in people close to them and relatives.

Mystery hyperope Some fears can be caused by a hyper-mom mother who herself dictates a negative reaction to the child. In most cases, the child's fear itself appears only after a personal negative experience( for example, a bite of an insect or dog).

Other causes of phobias in children

In addition to the influence of parents, there are other causes that lead to the appearance of childish fear:

  1. Specific incident that scared the child. For example, an animal sting, a painful injection in the doctor's office, an accident on the road or an unsuccessful fall from a bicycle. Undoubtedly, not every child has a persistent fear. To the emergence of a phobia more predisposed are hypochondriac, insecure and shy kids.
  2. Baby imagination. All the little dreamers are expert at inventing monsters in a closet or under a bed, ghosts, ghosts and other monsters. However, some children after a while already do not remember the terrible invention, and some will cry and begin to panic afraid to remain alone.
  3. Emotionally unstable situation in the family. Constant scandals, quarrels, screams and lack of understanding between family members, as well as hyperopia or lack of psychological support, have a negative impact on the baby's condition, causing in him a lasting sense of anxiety, which in the future can grow into a child's fear.
  4. Mutual relations in the circle of peers. If the crumb is often humiliated, insulted and taunted in a kindergarten or school, he may develop a social phobia. He will flatly refuse to go to classes or to a group.
  5. Neuroses. Fears in children, unusual for their age or passing into pathology, are neuroses( we recommend reading: symptoms and treatment of neuroses in children).Only doctors can diagnose and treat such serious disorders.
To find out the cause of childish fear, it is necessary to look more closely at the child's close environment, to objectively assess the situation within the family. Children are very sensitive and tend to exaggerate, because any quarrel for them can be a shock.

Types of children's fears

Currently, there are four main types of phobia in preschool children, children 6-8 years of age and older. Most experts in this area adhere to the classification of children's fears according to certain characteristics:

  • is a matter of fear;
  • duration and intensity;
  • features of the course of childish fear;
  • the reasons that triggered the appearance.

Obsessive and delirious fears

Obsessive fears are directly related to the circumstances that led to their appearance, that is, such childish fears arise in absolutely certain cases. For example, acrophobia - fear of heights or claustrophobia - fear of enclosed space.

The appearance of delirious fear in a child can be difficult to explain, and even more so to find out the reason for such a disorder. Among the delirious fears you can meet the fear of wearing specific shoes, open an umbrella or even play with a certain toy. However, parents, whose baby is confronted with the problem of delirious fear, should not immediately panic. It happens that the source of childish fear is on the surface. For example, a crumb can panic afraid of putting on a jacket, because once, buttoning up a zipper, accidentally stuck to his skin.

Fear of heights To delirious fears is the fear of height or open space. Such phobias, however, may well go along with the baby into adulthood

Super-valuable and nocturnal fears in children

The most common fears in preschool children are overvalued fears. Practically in 90% of cases out of 100 they are the ones that worry the baby. Most often, pre-school and primary school children are afraid of darkness, loneliness, death, fairy-tale characters and animals. Kids are absolutely sure of the justification of their fears, sincerely believing that in a dark place a terrible monster hides or that being alone without parents is unsafe. Gradually, such beliefs begin to dominate the consciousness of the crumbs and to be the status of an overvalued idea.

Nightly fears got their name as a result of the fact that the child's fearful conditions manifest themselves at night during sleep. About 2-3% of children suffer from nightmares. Such night conditions are accompanied by throwing, screaming, moaning and crying. Sometimes a child can talk in a dream - for example, ask not to touch, let him go or anything to clean. More often a baby calls his mother to her, but at the same time she does not recognize her. Within a few minutes, the karapuz will calm down and continue to sleep, and in the morning will not even remember the night incident. In rare cases, against a background of nocturnal fears, the child has somnambulism.

Fear of darkness Monsters or fairy-tale creatures that "visit" a child at night or in his fantasies are for the baby's consciousness absolutely real

Age features of phobias in a child

In reality, the occurrence of childish fear is an integral and quite natural component of growing up. At a certain age, the presence of specific phobias is the norm - in this way the child prepares to meet with the real world. Below is a table in which children's fears are distributed according to the child's age.

Age limits of childish fear:

Age of child What scares children
0-6 months loud noises, for example, a fallen chair, sudden movements, lack of a mother nearby or unexpected changes in her mood
7 months - 1 year loud continuous sounds, For example, the work of a blender or the humming of a vacuum cleaner, unfamiliar strangers, unusual situations or a change in the familiar surroundings of the
1-2 years getting injured, because at this age the crumb gets new motor skills, Long separation from the mother or father( going to kindergarten is better to postpone)
2-3 years alienation with close relatives on an emotional level, nightmares, natural phenomena - like thunder, thunder and lightning
3-5 years death own or parents, Resulting in children begin to fear everything that can lead to it: diseases, fires, accidents, snake bites
5-7 years old fabulous characters and fictitious monsters, which leads to the fact that the child seeks not to remain completely alone;School phobias associated with entering the first grade
7-8 years old being late for the lesson, failing to do homework, getting a bad evaluation or reprimand, non-peerage, dark places, cellars and attics, accidents
8-11 years learning disabilities andSports, criminals, drug addicts, drunken people, physical violence severe illnesses
11-13 years the opportunity to look like a loser, ugly or stupid in the eyes of others, especially among friends and age groups, violence with a sexual charkter

Diagnostics fears in children

Before fight phobias in children, they need to diagnose correctly.

Having noticed in the child's behavior some nervousness, excessive capriciousness, sleep disturbance and the appearance of obsessive habits, ask for help from a psychologist or psychotherapist. He will conduct diagnostics with subsequent correction of identified childish fear.

When children are still very young, they are not able to accurately describe and explain what exactly disturbs them. This is the main difficulty in the psychological diagnosis of childhood fears. For qualitative diagnosis, the usual activities for kids are applied:

  1. Drawing. It can be drawings both on a given, and absolutely arbitrary subject. Analyzing the received pictures, experts pay attention to the arrangement of elements, the clarity of the lines, the hatching and the colors that the kid used when drawing. An older child can already be asked to portray the test fear.
  2. Inventing a fairy tale. A crumb of five years, you can suggest a fairy tale about your favorite hero or your own end of the story, which was interrupted at the most terrible place.
  3. Conversation on souls. Confidential conversation is relevant for a child over 4 years old. Find out if the child is afraid of any specific objects, phenomena, death, people, characters from a fairy tale, or he dreams of nightmares. During the conversation do not focus on the exciting moments of the child, let the conversation proceed in a calm atmosphere. Do not forget to support morally and positively adjust the baby.
Diagnostics by drawing For the diagnosis of the child's mental state, drawings are successfully used. By the color scale, the arrangement of the elements and their dimensions, a specialist can easily find out what is disturbing to the baby

How to help a child get rid of fear

After the detection and diagnosis of childish fear, the treatment and correction stage begins with the help of specialists. In modern psychology there is a wide variety of approaches and methods of how to deal with childish fears. They can be applied separately, sequentially or simultaneously. An important aspect of any therapy and correction is the consistency with the wishes of the baby. If the child does not like drawing, do not insist, and even more so.

Fairy-tale therapy and igroterapiya

Reading with your child a fairy tale, you thereby help them to understand the world and help them understand their feelings. The choice of a fairy story directly depends on the nature of the problem. Try to read and present everything in such a way that during the entire fairy tale the crumb felt strong and bold. For skazkoterapii perfectly suited stories Nosov, Dragunsky, Anderson's tales. It is also possible that the parents write their own exciting story.

The ideal way to overcome a phobia is to beat a situation or circumstances that hurt a child's psyche. In the form of the game, children are more relaxed, and childhood fears are less pronounced and easier to deal with. In addition to getting rid of fear, various dramatizations and games-dramatization can overcome isolation, shyness and uncertainty in their abilities.

Dad reads a fairy tale When listening to a fairy tale, the child is identified with the character and experiences his state, emotions. It is important to select stories that will help the child to be brave and hero

Isothermics and sand therapy

This method starts at the stage of diagnosis, only now the child paints his fear, and the specialist does his analysis. There are two wonderful ways to end the isothermal session:

  1. Make the depicted monster or villain ridiculous. For example, to draw Babe Yage an absurd hat or bloodthirsty Barmalea to handle balloons.
  2. Burn the drawing, explaining to the crumb that, along with the drawing, fear is also destroyed.

The use of sand for drawing has several advantages over conventional drawing:

  • is suitable even for children under 7 years old;
  • in the process of sand therapy, the child is more exposed and more efficiently studies his own feelings and fears;
  • plus everything when working with sand in crumbs improves memory and fine motor skills, and also removes internal tension.
Drawing on the sand Drawing on the sand is a very deep therapy that helps the child to better connect with his senses and further develops his fine motor skills, soothes

Recommendations for parents

First of all, parents should know what to do can not under any circumstances:

  1. Punish a crumb ifThe one is afraid of something.
  2. Laugh at the baby and blame for pretense or stupidity.
  3. Specially create conditions that provoke fear, in order to overcome it. For example, if a child is afraid of dogs, force him to iron them.
  4. If possible, do not constantly watch only horror movies or read terrible stories.

What can parents do to save the child from childish fear? The following tips can be useful:

  1. Sometimes you just need to listen to the crumbs and try to understand his feelings. Telling you about your experiences, the child will not only throw out the accumulated emotions, but will also give you an opportunity to understand the causes of his fear. The main thing is not to overdo it, trying to find out from the baby what and why he is afraid - this will only exacerbate the situation. Direct questions should be avoided if the child does not want it himself. The best option is to take an observational position and ask only leading questions.
  2. Be sure to say that you love and always if necessary, stand up for the protection of the youngster.
  3. It will also be superfluous to find additional defenders in the form of a blanket, a flashlight or a figure of your favorite hero.
  4. Try to explain the real origin and essence of the phenomenon or the thing that causes the child's fear.
  5. Watch kind cartoons and read books together. For example, a wonderful cartoon "Little Raccoon" will show the crumb that many terrible monsters in reality turn out to be fantasy.
  6. Draw a fear on paper and work out a way to destroy it.

It is important to remember: in order to create fear, sometimes there will be enough moments, but the work on overcoming it can take years and require much more strength for the whole family. If nothing helps to overcome the fear of the child, do not postpone counseling with the therapist. Phobias, which continue to persecute a child after 10 years, can eventually lead to the development of neuroses, drug addiction and alcoholism.


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